THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Like any other girl of her age, 23-year-old Shilja too had bright dreams about a decently-paid job when she opted for a career in nursing. She expected a life in a swanky hospital abroad where she can draw Rs12 to 15 lakh salary a year. But her hopes were shattered once she had to circumscribe her career into a low-paying job in a local private hospital.
Majority of the nurses who enter into the career after taking huge loans, end up in never-ending debts as they draw meagre salaries that will never suffice to meet their debts.
Drawing up a salary of just Rs 4,000 a month, Shilja is in her hardest ever conundrum in life. She had to shell out Rs 7 lakh to pay for her nursing course in Bangalore, including Rs 2 lakh loan from the Union Bank of India.
With the loan amount now standing at Rs 2.58 lakh, she is asked to pay Rs 8,000 as EMI. She is yet to start repaying the loan. Even if she gets a salary of Rs 8,500 as per government norms, she will not be able to afford both EMIs and her daily expenses.
It does not stop there. Villains can be anywhere.
Twenty-four-year-old Meegal’s hopes hit a roadblock when an agent asked Rs 8 lakh for a government job in the Middle East.“I took a Rs 4 lakh loan for my course submitting title documents in a bank. I won’t get another loan to pay (the agent) for a job abroad as my documents are already in a bank,” said Meegal, who draws a salary of Rs 4,000 per month.
Though the labour is cheap, bank interests are not. Most of the students, who hail from lower to middle class families, can afford the tuition fees only with bank loan assistance.